Metallica frontman James Hetfield has said it’s a huge honour to donate his car collection to the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles.
While he’s most famously known for his role in the metal band, Hetfield also leads a double life as a prestige petrolhead.
Over the past few years, he’s garnered significant credibility in the car scene for his unique collection of custom-made vehicles, which are known on display in the museum.
While the vast majority of car collectors purchase — you know, actual built cars — Hetfield instead builds his from scratch.
Speaking to MotorTrend about donating the cars, Hetfield said: “I had a vision of not having to take care of these cars anymore because at some point… when I have these cars, at some point they have me.
“It takes a lot of time and effort to keep these things up and running, and in good condition. They were going to be either auctioned or donated or something. Then that did actually happen.
“I’m super grateful that the Petersen Museum was able to take the collection and keep it all together. That’s the one thing that I was really disappointed about, the fact that if they went to auction and they all went off somewhere different they wouldn’t be living together anymore, and it wouldn’t be as a collection.
“I think word got around to them, and they offered to take the collection. I was stoked. As far as the prestige of the Petersen Museum, and my collection being in there, it’s a huge honor. It really is.”
Hetfield was then asked if he misses the cars. “I get to look at them every day in my book, man,” he says, referring to his recently released book Reclaimed Rust: The Four-Wheeled Creations Of James Hetfield. “Yeah, I miss driving certain cars and just being around them but, you know, they served their purpose. I got to get creative.”
The cars are part of an exhibition at the museum called Reclaimed Rust: The James Hetfield Collection. Among them are Voodoo Priest — which is based on a ’37 Lincoln Zephyr — a purple ’56 Ford F-100 pickup truck, and Skyscraper, which is what Hetfield calls his 1953 Buick Skylark.